Mascots #2 – Elliot

I like to think that my mascot makes a bit more sense than Marc’s.  I mean, at his simplest, Guv’nor SQUISH, a plush T-rex, is just one of those toys from  It’s his ludicrous backstory what turns him into a Mascot.  Oh drat…I suppose I have anthropomorphised something after all, then, haven’t I?


In any case, below you’ll find the most elaborate story I’ve composed for him.  I suppose his introduction to the world, really, for better or worse.  I was hoping he would be a sweet pet, but as you will see, that wasn’t in the cards.  He’s such a grump.

Each picture shows a different room, or aspect of a room, in Erin’s Charleston, IL flat where we all lived during MA work.  Before moving away, we thoroughly cleaned and then went about immortalising the  apartment for posterity.  Everyone should have a record of their first flat, I think.  The one with the horrid kitchen and the oddly shaped rooms and the ancient carpets? Yes, that one.  Makes it easier to look back with fond laughter later in life.

And records are always better when they include dinosaurs?  Yes, I’ll make that a statement of fact.  They are.

Without further ado, Guv’nor SQUISH.

*   *   *

In his day, Guv’nor was a highly respected artiste. Once recognised for his smart beret, elegant tastes, and prowess in the studio, he is now a gossip ragged, bloodshot mess. Excursions after a string of reclusive nights lead one to believe that he rarely makes it under the covers before drunken sleep.

Yes, he used to command the canvas with an aplomb that no other dinosaur could match. Pathetically tiny arms were no hindrance to this genius. His Jurassic period was, of course, his peak, but the Cretaceous was his ruination. His mates crumbled under a mass of meteor, while he crumbled under the pressure of critics who demanded further brilliance.

Adopting the pseudonym SQUISH in the hopes of anonymity, he retired from the world of art. He takes a shower. A cold one.

What? No. No documentarian here. Go about your day.

Oatmeal he thinks…something stomach settling.

SQUISH maintains a precarious attachment to the outside world through his blog and his occasional trips to the five and dime for cigarettes and cheap liquor. He repairs to his study to make an entry, but quickly finds himself in the grasp of one of his many demons. Writer’s block.

Blast and damnation!

Oh, if only he had his fish friends…his connexion to an evolutionary time now past. If only his brain was larger than a walnut. Such issues surmounted might result in more posts.

He sulks from the study, deciding that perhaps he will watch a film. Something to put his stormy mind at ease.

But he has no mood for any of his current films. He launches himself at his dilapidated DVD case and tears it to pieces. ‘Hecho in Mexico’ it said. Now unmade in Charleston, IL…

…pit of despair.

There is nothing left for the dinosaur once known as Guv’nor, his greatest paintings sold, and his newest serving as dust-collecting cat beds in the houses of hoarders. He contemplates the end.

No, SQUISH! Chicago!

A blurry-eyed growl in the direction of the camera man. He races to the loo. Perhaps a spark of inspiration remains? Enough to pull him through to another day, at least. We shall see what the city brings him.

Historian, novelist, musician, and imagination professional.

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